European champions Sweden won their opening match 26-18 against Brazil ©Getty Images

Co-hosts Sweden got off to a winning start on the second day of the International Handball Federation (IHF) Men's World Championship.

The European champions struggled to hit top form in the first half at the Scandinavium in Gothenburg, holding an 11-9 lead over Brazil at the midway stage.

Sweden went on to win 26-18, but were grateful for the efforts of goalkeeper Andreas Palicka, who earned player of the match by making 17 saves and scoring a goal himself.

Earlier in the day at the same venue in Group C, Cape Verde recorded their first win at an IHF World Championship by beating Uruguay 33-25.

Spain were runners-up at last year's European Championship and bronze medallists at the last World Championship in Egypt in 2021.

They are tipped to fare well again at this tournament, and came through a tough opening test in Group A by beating Montenegro 30-25 at the Tauron Arena in the Polish city of Kraków.

Kauldi Ordiozola top-scored for Spain with six goals.

In the other match in Group A, Iran claimed their first-ever World Championship victory by a single goal against Chile.

Iran led 13-11 at the interval, but Chile recovered to lead 23-20, their opponents also two players down at that stage.

However, Iran hit back, and Mohammadmahdi Behnamnia struck the decisive goal with 26 seconds remaining to clinch a 25-24 win, goalkeeper Mohammad Siavoshishahenayati making his 17th save of the match in the dying embers to deny Luciano Scaramelli and ensure his team collected the two points.

Máté Lékai, left, top scored for Hungary in their 35-27 victory over South Korea ©Getty Images
Máté Lékai, left, top scored for Hungary in their 35-27 victory over South Korea ©Getty Images

After Olympic champions France edged past co-hosts Poland 26-24 in last night's opener in Group B, Slovenia joined them on two points with a comfortable 33-19 success against Saudi Arabia at Spodek in Katowice.

Group D also got underway today with Hungary overcoming South Korea 35-27 at the Kristianstad Arena in the Swedish city of Kristianstad, aided by seven goals from Máté Lékai.

Bjarki Már Elísson then starred for Iceland with nine goals in their 30-26 victory against Portugal.

The first round of matches in Groups E, F, G and H are due to be held tomorrow, including holders Denmark starting the defence of their title against Belgium.